Linda and Roger's Bunhybee Grasslands

Geography of the Local District

This is a page within Roger and Linda's Bunhybee Grasslands Web-Site.
Bunhybee Grasslands is a 49 hectare / 120 acre conservation property.
It is 35km south of Braidwood, in southern N.S.W.
You can follow through the internal links, or you may find it easier to use the Site-Map.

This page provides a general geographical overview of the district.

There are companion pages on:

Here are Palerang Council's:

The relevant contour maps are:

  • 1:100,000 Araluen
  • 1:25,000 Kain

Click on the adjacent map for a larger version:

District Map
Bunhybee is SSW of
Braidwood, between
Ballalaba and Jerrabattgulla

Local Map
Bunhybee is between
Ballalaba and Jerrabattgulla
which are 5km apart

Click a Map to enlarge it

Property Map
Bunhybee is between
Ballalaba and Jerrabattgulla,
just west of Bunhybee Peak

Bunhybee is at at 710-760m, in the catchment of the Shoalhaven River. The river's source is 40km south of the property, and the river runs northwards for several hundred kilometres, before turning east to Nowra.

The valleys in the area generally run south to north, and the property is on a tributary just west of the main valley, once called Oroonmeir/Oronmear Creek, possibly subsequently called Jerrabattgully, but now called Jerrabattgulla Creek. (See this list of NSW rivers). The Creek's source is 30km south of Bunhybee, and it runs northwards, joining the Shoalhaven 5km north of Bunhybee.

To the west of Jerrabattgulla Creek is the Gourock Range or Tallaganda Range, which rises to 1350m, and is part of the Great Dividing Range, i.e. all water in the area runs to the Pacific Ocean. Much of the range is still timbered. Some of it is protected within the Tallaganda National Park, but a considerable amount of it is 'State Forest' (i.e. subject to clear-felling, and replanting with radiata pine). On top of 1359m Mt Cowangerong, due west of Bunhybee, and 3km south of Parker's Gap, is the Captains Flat Weather Radar, on top of a 22m tower – image courtesy of a Captain's Flat blogger.

According to a Shire document and a page on the Visit Braidwood site, "Tallaganda is thought to be the Aboriginal name for all of the valley within 20 miles of the rising of the Shoalhaven River". The name was originally applied to one of the first properties in the area, 200-acres granted in 1828, at the confluence of the Creek and the Shoalhaven.

In addition, the local government area was called Tallaganda Shire until its forced amalgamation with the post-1909 remnants of Yarrowlumla Shire, to form Palerang Shire, which took place in 2004.

To the east of the Shoalhaven are substantial coastal ranges and an escarpment, rising to 1000m, and still heavily timbered. Rather more of these ranges are protected, within the Morton, Monga, Deua and Wadbilliga National Parks. Here is a map showing the national parks in the area. The ranges are littered with small mines (i.e. holes in the ground, not land-mines).

The district is exposed, windy and cold in winter. The district was for many years a successful wool-growing area, although these days it appears to run more cattle than sheep. Agriculture has been limited to small-scale activities. The few other industries have included horse-breeding, timber-gathering, some timber-milling, the distilling of eucalyptus-oil from E. radiata (Narrow-leaved peppermint), and 'wattle-barking' (for tanning hides) – using "the local black wattle tree, Acacia mearnsii" (usually called Late Wattle these days).

A study of the Shoalhaven catchment and its 13 sub-catchment areas listed the population of the Jerrabattgulla Creek catchment as 65 in 2006 and 113 in 2011, in an area of 358 sq km (i.e. sparse).

The nearest significant town to Bunhybee is Braidwood, 35km to the north. Braidwood is 200km SSW of Sydney, 60km ESE of Canberra, and 40km NW of Bateman's Bay. It is 20km west of the coastal escarpment, and lies on the plateau at 640m. Braidwood has a population of about 1200 – about the same as its population during the gold-rush in the 1850s – but with coffee shops, bakeries and galleries for the passing trade.

There are only three other townships of any significance nearby:

Bunhybee is named for the 946m almost-mountain above it. However, the sole reference found to date for Bunhybee Peak is in "a Schedule of Principal Mts., etc", in the Queensland Geographical Journal including the proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia, Queensland, Volumes 5-10, 1889 (cover digitised from the Uni of Michigan Library).

A. The following placenames are prominent in the Shoalhaven Valley downstream from the confluence with the Jerrabattgulla, which is 4km to the north of Bunhybee.

Ballalaba. There are several uses of this name:

Togganoggera. This is at the confluence of Jerrabattgulla Creek and the Shoalhaven River, and is the name of the bridge over the Jerrabattgulla a few metres to the south. It once boasted a Post Office, and it appears on electoral commission maps . But there are only a couple of houses in the vicinity and there appear to be no historical records of the place.

Nith(s)dale. This is a property 12km north, to the East of the bridge over the Shoalhaven, granted in 1833 to the free-settler John Wallace. The homestead is heritage-listed.

Farringdon. This is a property 20km north, just to the West of the Shoalhaven. It was granted in 1836 to Dr. Robert Huntley, a Braidwood Doctor until 1853. The local Rural Fire Service of that name is only 11km north of Bunhybee, between Ballalaba (at the intersection with the Captain's Flat road), and the bridge over the Shoalhaven.

Bendoura. There are two uses of the name:

Elrington? This was one of the earliest grants in the area, in 1827, to Major William Sandys Elrington. He was the magistrate in what was then the limit of settlement. He acquired a number of properties between Braidwood and Araluen, and I'm unsure which was called Elrington.

B. The following placenames are prominent in the upper Jerrabattgulla Valley, immediately to the south of Bunhybee.

Jerrabattgulla Creek formed the boundary between what became Krawarree Cadastral Parish from the Creek east to the Shoalhaven, and Ollalulla Cadastral Parish, on the western bank.

Warragandra, 2km south. This was once the heart of a large (2,000-acre? 6,000-acre?) property. Today it's just the homestead and the adjacent 200 acres, owned by Guy and Raina Baring during the 1960s, then the Reids/Reads, and since 2004 the Tischlers.

Krawarree (1) appears on the Parish Map of 1958 2km south of Bunhybee, across the old mail road / Harts Road, on a property these days called Fernleigh, which was originally owned by the Hart family. It appears that this use of Krawarree referred to the small (2,700' / 820m) peak on the property. The Cadastral Parish took this name. But see also Krawarree (2) in section C. below.

Jerrabattgulla, earlier called Jerebatgully, 3km south. Today this is just a placename, but it boasted a school, 1892-1957

Gilston/Gilstone, a property 3km south, on the western side of the Jerrabattgulla Road. The property is an official rainfall monitoring station. In 2010, the homestead was considered for heritage-listing, but too much recent work had been done to it.

Wandragandria, 4km south. It's not clear whether this was a property, an area ... or maybe a rock ...

Kain, 8km south, once a surname, now a location-name, just before Jerrabattgulla Rd turns eastwards out to the Cooma Rd. It also lends its name to the local 1:25,000 map

Hereford Hall, a property 16km south, in the upper Jerrabattgulla valley

C. The following placenames are prominent in the Shoalhaven Valley upstream from the confluence with the Jerrabattgulla at Togganoggera. The road along this stretch is variously referred to (by people and on signposts and maps) as Krawaree Rd, Snowball Rd and the Cooma Rd. The first of the placenames is 3km to the east of Bunhybee, across the saddle.

Oranmeir / Oronmear / Oronmeir / Ornmeir / Aranmeir / Oroonmeir. This has had many and confusing usages, listed below from the oldest first to those that appear to be current:

Stony Creek. This creek runs from West of Gundillion, northwards, past the Oranmeir homestead, then crosses the Cooma Rd 6km from the Togganoggera bridge and joins the Shoalhaven. It appears on maps but in very few documents. However Grevilles 1872 Post Office Directory showed O'Connells as living there (but with several other people living at Ornmeir and Aranmeir, which may have been close by; or some distance away).

Gundillion Cemetery is 10km south of the bridge.

The Hole and Marble Arch are (striking) natural features that can be accessed from a car-park behind Gundillion Cemetery, by walking across a ford over the Shoalhaven (map, walking notes, tourism page, map, photo).

Emu Flat is immediately south of the Gundillion Cemetery.

Gundillion Hall is 14km south from the bridge. It presumably dates from 1911, because its centenary is being celebrated in December 2011.

Wyanbene is off the Cooma road, across the Shoalhaven and to the east of Gundillion. The name applies to a property 18km south of the bridge, a creek, and caves.

Krawaree (2) is a property 24km south from the bridge, 8km north of Jinden. The property was granted in 1840 to Captain Grant (HM 61st Regiment of Foot). On the Parish Map of 1958, it is presumably the George Campbell Curlewis property, then of 2560 acres. Krawaree is one of the names used for the main road. But see also Krawarree (1) in section B. above.

Jinden is a property 34km south of the bridge, granted in 1831 to George Curlewis (2560 acres?).

Snowball is a property 40km south of the bridge, and just before the watershed between the Shoalhaven valley and the Numeralla valley to the south

This is a page within the Bunhybee Grasslands Web-Site, home-page here, and site-map here

Contact: Linda or Roger

Created: 23 Feb 2009; Last Amended: 8 Oct 2011, 17 Oct 2015, 1 Feb 2017 (Gilston)